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Movies for a 486 computer ?

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First post, by Intel486dx33

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What are some good movies to watch on a 486dx4-100 computer ?
I have an 8x CD-ROM drive and 16mb ram.

I am running dos 6.22 and Win-3.11

Is there a famous movie on CD somewhere ?

Reply 1 of 29, by BitWrangler

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There was metropolis in black and white on a magazine cover CD once. That's about all the movie it could handle. Multimedia clips in Encarta etc, were generally postage stamp sized. Unless you have some MPEG hardware then video CDs might work.

Edit: Best guess on the CD with Metropolis on was last half of '96 or first half of '97 on a Personal Computer World coverdisk. I think the timeframe is pretty solid, but it could have been a different magazine.

Last edited by BitWrangler on 2021-06-02, 22:02. Edited 1 time in total.

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Reply 2 of 29, by lolo799

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Your choice is between mpeg based VCD or Sirius MovieCD based on the motion pixels codec.

The former would work best with an mpeg1 decoding card and the latter benefits from having a good graphic card, both kind of discs can be found on ebay.
The list of titles released on MovieCD was over a hundred, with only a few good movies.

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Reply 3 of 29, by rmay635703

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My 486dx2 had some long 320x200 AVIs included with one of the demo CDs, seems like they played just fine in full screen

I wouldn’t call them movies per se but they had music and “impressive 3D computer graphics” (in a video)

Video CDs should be playable especially on a 5x86 with a decent svga card

Reply 4 of 29, by BitWrangler

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Nah, 5x86 won't quite do it, software MPEG 1 decoding is cycle thirsty, software only needs P133, any hardware codec help helps though, even SiS6326 PCI cards will enable it, if you get the right drivers.

2017: Basement full of ancient PC stuff, starting to go through it. 2021: Still starting, heh, many setbacks. So what's this BitWrangler guy's deal ??? >>> Taming the pile, specs to target?

Reply 5 of 29, by rmay635703

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BitWrangler wrote on 2021-06-02, 23:32:

Nah, 5x86 won't quite do it, software MPEG 1 decoding is cycle thirsty, software only needs P133, any hardware codec help helps though, even SiS6326 PCI cards will enable it, if you get the right drivers.

My 5x86 came with a 1mb pci graphics card and XINGMPEG player, I don’t remember any issues and I doubt the cheap video card could do hardware acceleration but it’s been too many years to remember exactly what I had under the hood back then

Reply 6 of 29, by Jo22

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I second that, XING MPEG Player is a fine piece of software. The Windows 3.1 version supports DCI, also.
If memory serves, the Windows 9x version later got MMX support, even.

What's cool - XING MPEG Player also supports CD-i titles.
Provided that, the OS and the CD-ROM drive can read/access them.

Windows 9x lost the ability to read CD-i (Green Book) media out-of-box.
Unless DOS CD-ROM drivers (MSCDEX mainly) or a special driver are loaded.

An experimental CD-i driver for Windows 9x (tested myself) can be found here:
http://www.icdia.co.uk/sw_pc/disctools.html

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Reply 7 of 29, by BitWrangler

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This one? https://winworldpc.com/product/xingmpeg-player/2x

I don't remember it, tried a heck of a lot of different ones back in the day on DOS, win 3.x and in slackware, nothing would do full frame rate on the 5x86 and I had it at 2x60, with all the goodies turned on I could turn on with set686. Only thing to do was decompress it to WMV, then it would play, and hog all my precious HDD until I was done.

2017: Basement full of ancient PC stuff, starting to go through it. 2021: Still starting, heh, many setbacks. So what's this BitWrangler guy's deal ??? >>> Taming the pile, specs to target?

Reply 9 of 29, by Caluser2000

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My apologies. They were Macaws

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There's a glitch in the matrix.

Apparently 32-bit is dead and nobody likes P4s.

Reply 10 of 29, by thepirategamerboy12

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On my 486 DX2-66 with 12mb RAM, I can play 320x240 15fps Cinepak AVIs I encode myself with FFmpeg just fine in full-screen VGA Mode X under Windows 3.1. I think the CPU can technically handle playing higher res/FPS videos than that, but it saves a lot on hard drive space.

Reply 11 of 29, by Caluser2000

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thepirategamerboy12 wrote on 2021-06-03, 03:12:

On my 486 DX2-66 with 12mb RAM, I can play 320x240 15fps Cinepak AVIs I encode myself with FFmpeg just fine in full-screen VGA Mode X under Windows 3.1. I think the CPU can technically handle playing higher res/FPS videos than that, but it saves a lot on hard drive space.

Can y6ou be so kind to provide some shots of that please?

There's a glitch in the matrix.

Apparently 32-bit is dead and nobody likes P4s.

Reply 13 of 29, by Error 0x7CF

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There's a version of It's A Wonderful Life on CD-ROM that's meant to be playable on low spec machines, as low as a 486sx with 8MB of RAM. I've played it on a 386DX-40. You can find it as "It's A Wonderful Life The CD! 1993" on archive.org

Old precedes antique.

Reply 14 of 29, by Caluser2000

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Intel486dx33 wrote on 2021-06-03, 05:01:

Where can I get a DCI driver for a Cirrus logic 5429 video card ?

That is for you to find. Not the rest of Vogons members.

There's a glitch in the matrix.

Apparently 32-bit is dead and nobody likes P4s.

Reply 15 of 29, by thepirategamerboy12

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Caluser2000 wrote on 2021-06-03, 03:23:

Can you be so kind to provide some shots of that please?

Here's a shot of 486 Windows 3.1 video playback. I encoded the intro to Cobra Command as a Cinepak 320x240 AVI with FFmpeg and it works fine even in full-screen.

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Reply 16 of 29, by Caluser2000

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thepirategamerboy12 wrote on 2021-06-03, 08:52:
Caluser2000 wrote on 2021-06-03, 03:23:

Can you be so kind to provide some shots of that please?

Here's a shot of 486 Windows 3.1 video playback. I encoded the intro to Cobra Command as a Cinepak 320x240 AVI with FFmpeg and it works fine even in full-screen.
486 Windows 3.1 Video Playback.jpg

Thanks but I asked the other chap to provide the pics.

There's a glitch in the matrix.

Apparently 32-bit is dead and nobody likes P4s.

Reply 17 of 29, by Jo22

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Caluser2000 wrote on 2021-06-03, 03:11:

My apologies. They were Macaws

Apologies accepted, sir. I've even got the optional codec for Windows 3.1.. 😀
How was the codec called again ? Ultimotion, I think. The OS/2 native version was smoother, of course.

If there's any interest in the driver, I can post it. Or a link of it.
It's been several years since I found it.. Somewhere.

"Time, it seems, doesn't flow. For some it's fast, for some it's slow.
In what to one race is no time at all, another race can rise and fall..." - The Minstrel

//My video channel//

Reply 18 of 29, by BitWrangler

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I think it was what you might call "second gen" PCI graphics cards, like some versions of S3 Virge and Trio, and TGUI 9680, CL5440 had MPEG-1 acceleration and often had a player included. Hard to define what I'm thinking of as second gen, but first gen would share chipsets with ISA/VLB, and second gen would be PCI only. Though I've got an idea there was a last gasp high end VLB board that would do it, but deets are eluding my thinker. Some of them were quite cheap b y '97 and you could easily have had one without realising it had MP1... as opposed to knowing you had a specialist card like a ReelMagic or similar.

Edit: ET6000, Ark2000, Mach64VT and the last WD Paradise seem to have had it too.

2017: Basement full of ancient PC stuff, starting to go through it. 2021: Still starting, heh, many setbacks. So what's this BitWrangler guy's deal ??? >>> Taming the pile, specs to target?

Reply 19 of 29, by megatron-uk

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You are looking for chips that have one or more of the following features:

Colourspace conversion (YUV to RGB)
Motion compensation
Scaling

Those tended to be what various playback software tools advantage of for "hardware accelerated" video playback. It's the difference between models like the original Trio64 Vs the later Trio64V and V+. The Virge, for example, had all of the video acceleration functions of the Trio64V+.

Of course you then had later cards that offloaded the entire MPEG1 decoding to a dedicated chip or daughter board on the video card, but cards with the above features were more better termed "video acceleration", since those features could equally be taken advantage of for more general playback of other video formats and were not just limited to acceleration of MPEG video.

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